Polovtsov Mansion

In 1835, Prince Sergei Gagarin commissioned Alexander Pähl to redesign the facades of the Polovtsov Mansion in the late Neoclassical style. The rusticated ground floor, window frames with cornices and the semi-circular bay window above the front entrance created a sense of elegance and representativeness. In 1861, the mansion was acquired by Baron Alexander Stieglitz, a court banker who bought it as a dowry for his foster daughter, Nadezhda Yudina. Nadezhda’s husband, Alexander Polovtsov, played an important role in the political and public life of Russia in the late nineteenth century. He was a senator, chairman of the Russian History Society and state secretary of Tsar Alexander III. The building is now the House of the Architect and stands at 52 Bolshaya Morskaya Street (97 River Moika Embankment).

The interior decor was designed by Harald Julius von Bosse (1850s), Fyodor Eppinger (1858) and Nikolai Brullov (1870–74), who worked on the Oak Room (Library) and the White Room (Louis XV Drawing Room). Nikolai Brullov was assistant by a young architect called Ludwig Marschner, who created the decor of the Lesser Library or Oppenord Library. This interior was named after the French designer Gilles-Marie Oppenord, whose works in the Rococo style provided the inspiration for the decor. In the 1880s, Maximilian von Messmacher worked on the interior decor of the mansion.

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